In the vast world of financial services, effective marketing strategies are essential for attracting clients. As a financial services professional, you can use digital marketing to improve customer loyalty, build your brand awareness, increase your online visibility, and distinguish yourself in this competitive market. Improve your financial services marketing strategy through these digital marketing tactics.
What is Financial Services Marketing?
Financial services marketing involves all the strategies and tools used to create brand awareness for financial services companies. It encompasses everything from your website to your sales team. Each tool should contain consistent messaging to current and potential clients that communicate the benefits of choosing your services and expertise.
Since financial services encompass a variety of businesses, your digital marketing strategy will not be the same as others in your field. Different types of financial institutions include commercial banks, investment banking, insurance, brokerage firms, financial planning firms, and CPAs. However, these marketing and content strategies are adaptable, so tailor them to your financial services institution.
10 Digital Marketing Tools for Financial Services
Traditional marketing channels, such as television commercials, radio ads, billboards, transit advertising, and other print ads, are proven methods of customer outreach. Regardless of this fact, digital marketing is much easier to customize for your financial product. You can craft effective digital marketing campaigns and gain a competitive advantage with the right tools.
Instead of coming up with one message and hoping a large audience heeds your call to action, create smaller, targeted digital campaigns that address different segments of your audience. For example, you could create campaigns targeting different types of consumers, such as:
- Banking consumers
- Accounting consumers
- Mortgage consumers
Breaking down the consumers of your financial service into different segments allows you to create a better, more effective content marketing strategy. You can then optimize the customer journeys of each segment and apply different tactics to each campaign. Some financial services marketing techniques to incorporate into your financial services marketing are as follows:
1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search engine optimization (SEO) is an important component of financial digital marketing. It involves incorporating keywords and phrases into your website, content, and social media to improve your ranking in search results. Whenever someone searches for financial services professionals in your niche, your website should appear on the first page of search results.
With 4.66 billion users worldwide, the internet is a primary source for finding and researching new businesses. If you’re not easy to find online, you are potentially missing out on every person searching online for financial services organizations. Further, 75% of users won’t navigate past the first page of search results.
The easiest way to start optimizing your website for SEO is to do a Google search using the phrases and keywords people would use to find you on the internet and see where your site appears in the search results. Note where your competitors come up in the search to see how you compare. Incorporate keywords and phrases into your website headers and copy, but do so strategically to avoid stuffing. If your site has too many keywords, Google might rank you lower in the search results.
2. Local SEO
It’s not enough to optimize your website and other online content for SEO and then move on to other marketing strategies. You also need to pay attention to your local search ranking. When you have optimized your local SEO, financial services customers can find you when performing hyperlocal searches. If someone is looking for a “CPA near me,” local SEO helps you appear in these results.
To optimize your local SEO, start with your listing on Google. Go to google.com/business and click “Manage now.” Login with your Google credentials, or create an account to get started. Once you’ve claimed and verified your business, make sure your name, address, phone number, and website are up to date. Your "Google My Business" listing controls how you appear on Google Maps. It also gives users access to your address, phone number, and hours just by performing a search in your geographical area. You can also use this listing to view and manage customer testimonials and reviews.
Once you’ve updated your Google listing, do the same with Yelp. Create a business account and verify your name, address, website, phone number, and hours. Finally, incorporate locally-focused keywords and phrases in your website to tell search engines your business is a relevant search result. Create content with headlines and copy like “Best CPA in Nashville” or “Nashville CPA.” When someone in Nashville is searching for a CPA, these phrases will improve your chances of being included in the list of resulting web pages.
The first two digital marketing tools discussed how to optimize your website to make it easy to spot in an internet search. This tool refers to your website itself because it is your primary digital marketing tool. Financial marketers must have a site that's clean and easy to navigate.
Today’s consumer has a short attention span. It’s estimated that a consumer will leave your website if they haven’t found any useful information in 15 seconds. Additionally, 57% of customers indicated that they won’t recommend a business if the website isn’t mobile responsive.
Make sure your website is well designed, and consider customer experiences when creating things such as user interface and navigation features. Test it out on mobile devices and fix any issues with responsiveness. Keep in mind that a well-made website can greatly increase conversion.
It’s no secret that your potential customers are likely glued to their phones. Globally, social media users spend about 2.5 hours a day on social media. If you’re not creating content and running social media ads, you are missing the chance to get in front of a captive audience.
While Facebook and YouTube are popular platforms for digital marketing in general, LinkedIn is the most popular platform for financial services professionals. Create a LinkedIn account for your business and post relevant content to establish your credibility.
Join different groups and follow financial industry organizations to connect with other professionals and network for potential clients. Since LinkedIn attracts professionals looking to network and shares their business insights with others, this is a great platform for finding prospective financial services clients.
You don’t need to limit your social media presence to one platform. As of the third quarter of 2021, Facebook had 2.91 billion users. You can use Facebook to build an online community and humanize your brand by posting about yourself or your employees and highlighting successes.
Use Facebook to share relevant articles with your followers. Sharing credible financial tips, articles about cybersecurity, and other content that resonates with customers helps you establish yourself as an expert, which improves customer satisfaction.
You can also use Facebook to share client stories and other content that helps people connect with your brand. Charles Schwab recently posted a teaser for a Veterans Day webcast in which a Schwab professional will interview a current Army Colonel who will share tips on overcoming adversity.
Financial services content can be dry. When discussing digital marketing tactics through a highly visible medium like Instagram, the financial services industry isn't usually considered. However, don’t let this deter you from utilizing Instagram's platform and opportunities to connect. Financial organizations like Chime, Credit Karma, and Venmo regularly create content that resonates with young audiences.
Chime currently has over 680,000 followers on Instagram and regularly posts pop culture memes, fun questions, and interesting customer stats. This post from October 2021 details the average amount of money Chime customers had spent on coffee in the past year. These posts use humor to build a community and bring a personality to the brand.
Create eye-catching infographics with interesting tips and facts and tag your posts with hashtags to help users find you.
7. Content Marketing
As we have explored thus far, financial services content doesn’t have to be dry. Content creation improves your SEO and further builds customer relationships. You can host a blog on your website and create regular posts with tips and trends for your users to follow. Effective content marketing can expand your customer base while increasing the number of customers who return.
If you’re comfortable on camera, host a series of live streams in which users can “ask me anything” (heeding financial services regulations, of course). If you’re not licensed to give financial advice, don’t answer specific stock questions, for example. Host live streams through your Facebook or Instagram feed and promote them before the event to attract participation.
You might be more comfortable creating videos in which you can do multiple takes if you mess up. In this case, create a series of videos addressing frequently asked questions, highlighting other local business owners, and celebrating your employees, for example.
For an effective content strategy, consider creating a content calendar and planning things out several days, weeks, or months in advance. Speak with members of the marketing team to find out what customers are looking for.
8. Paid Ads
Advertisement through digital channels is often less expensive than traditional marketing. Platforms like Facebook and Instagram let you create sponsored posts with a specific budget in mind. Google and other internet advertising platforms operate on a pay-per-click basis in which your pricing is determined by how many people click through on your ads.
Sponsored Facebook and Instagram ads can be targeted based on a variety of factors. You can choose to run your ad to people in your area, segment by demographics, or choose to show your ad to people with specific interests. Since you can cap your budget, it’s easy to test Facebook ads against one another to see what types of messaging and targeting tactics work best before launching a large campaign.
These ads show up in various users’ feeds with a notification that the post is sponsored. Make yours stand out with interesting visuals and copy that addresses how users will benefit from your services,
9. Email Marketing
Generate leads by including an email newsletter signup sheet on your website’s home page. For best results, save email campaigns for content that adds value for your customers. You can create a monthly newsletter with similar content to your blog, drawing parallels between the two platforms.
Add a personal touch to your customer service by automating happy birthday emails, holiday emails, welcome emails, and other content for your customers. Segment your email lists into groups of people with similar characteristics and tailor your content.
For example, you might have a list segment consisting of your youngest clients and send them articles about saving up to buy a house or the benefits of starting your retirement savings early. If you have a separate segment of clients who are already retired, send them content with new hobbies they can pursue with their newfound free time.
Whenever another company includes a link to your website on their website, they are creating a backlink. Backlinks improve your website’s credibility, helping you rank higher in search engines. They also improve consumer trust and visibility in online search.
You can increase your chances of being linked by creating high-quality content that is easy for others to find and reference. You can also do a search for your company and see where you are already linked. When you see existing backlinks, click on them to make sure they aren’t broken. If you find a broken backlink, send an email to the company with the correct link and ask them to update it.
Collaborating on guest posts for other companies and industry publications also helps you generate new backlinks. Offer to serve as an expert source or write articles for various financial publications and blogs.
Implementing Your Financial Services Marketing Campaign
The sheer number of digital marketing channels is enough to make your head spin. Even more intimidating is the knowledge that digital marketing is evolving every day as new technologies emerge. However, it's comforting to know that you don’t have to start all at once. Look for the easiest steps to tackle, and take it one step at a time.
First, make sure your website uses search engine optimization best practices. If you’re not sure how to do so, look online for tools you can use to run an SEO audit on your website. These tools assess your website and provide suggestions on how to enhance your keywords and phrases. While you’re auditing your site for SEO content, look at how it’s laid out and how it runs. Is your site responsive and clean on mobile devices? Does it take a long time to load? Is it easy to navigate between pages? Is your contact information visible or easy to locate? Once you’ve tackled your website’s design and SEO optimization, you can develop strategies for other digital marketing channels. Look through your annual strategic plan to determine your marketing goals and use them to narrow your marketing focus.
Financial services marketing through online channels doesn’t have to be dull or monotonous. Bring some creativity and start creating ads and content that establish your personality and connect you to your clients. These tools will help you capture the attention of internet users in your area, and they are a great way to supplement your existing marketing tools.